I’ve never made samosas before, but I figured, how hard can it be? And turns out, not that difficult!
Although, just as they were meant to be coming out of the oven I managed to quite spectacularly smash a glass all over the floor, and was just wearing socks, so they’re slightly more browned than I would have ideally gone for!
Here’s the recipe I used, along with a few changes…
1 tbsp vegetable oil
1/4tsp mustard seeds
15g finely chopped onion
1/2tsp grated ginger
1tbsp fresh coriander stalks, finely chopped
15g frozen peas
1/2tbsp ground coriander
1/4tsp chilli powder (or as you like it – remember you can always add more, but you can’t take it away!)
1/2tsp garam masala
1tbsp lemon juice
pinch of salt
150g mashed potato
2tbsp fresh coriander leaves, chopped
6 sheets filo pastry (a packet of ready-made jus-rol is ideal)
100g melted butter (and a pastry brush!)
1/2tbsp sesame seeds for sprinkling (optional)
First of all, prep everything – you want to be able to chuck each bit straight in the pan, so before you start cooking chop the onion really small, mash the potato, grate the ginger, finely chop the coriander stalks, shred the coriander leaves, measure out the peas and personally I like to measure (roughly) the spices. You can put the onion and ginger into one bowl, the peas, coriander stalks, spices, lemon juice and salt into another, and add the coriander leaves to the mashed potato pan. It may seem over-the-top, but trust me it makes this process so much easier!
Now, heat the oil in a small frying pan, and when its hot add the mustard seeds and fry them until they splutter (about 10-15 seconds if the oil is hot).
Next, add the onion and ginger and cook it for a couple of minutes over a high heat, until the onion is soft.
Then add the peas, coriander stalks, spices, lemon juice and salt and cook it for another couple of minutes. Finally, add the potato and the coriander leaves and cook it for a final 2-3 minutes – it should be nicely mixed together. At this stage I recommend trying it in order to adjust the flavouring. If you do add more spices, make sure you mix them in really well – you don’t want some areas more flavoured than others!
Now all you have to do is put them together! Before you start doing this, preheat the oven to 200C/400F/Gas Mark 6.
Get out your pre-made filo pastry, and dampen a tea towel. This will cover the pastry that you aren’t using to prevent it drying out, as it is very thin! Melt your butter.
I don’ t have any photos of this stage, as I temporarily misplaced my pastry brush, and therefore had to use a mixture between extra pastry, a spoon and my fingers to spread the butter… I decided to let my phone escape the buttery mess (it’s already floury, oops!). But I shall explain to the best of my ability!
Okay, so lay out your first piece of filo pastry (very gently as it is delicate) so that it is in front of you lengthways (ie with the short side directly in front of you, and the long ends on either side. This may sound like ridiculous detail, but I did it the wrong way the first time!)
Cover the entire piece in melted butter, and then fold in one third of the pastry lengthways towards the middle. Cover this with butter, and then fold in the other side – this will leave you with a triple-layered, long, thin, sheet.
Place a tablespoon of the potato filling at the close end of the strip. Take the left corner and fold it over the filling to the right to form a triangle shape. Fold it again along the crease of the triangle and continue until you’re about 3/4 of the way up the strip. At this stage it’s up to you whether you continue to the end of the pastry strip, or dispose of the rest of the pasty (I found that a whole strip of pastry was too much, as the final samosa was a bit too pastry-y). Wherever you chose to stop , brush both sides of the samosa with butter and then put it on a baking tray. Sprinkle on sesame seeds if using.
Repeat with the rest of the filling and pastry.
Bake for 30-35 minutes, turning halfway through, until they are golden and crisp. (Trying not to smash a glass as they’re due to come out…) Enjoy with a bowl of chutney (maybe this one!)
Apart from having a little too much pastry, they were delicious!